Vintage! World's oldest Torah found in Italy

Vintage! World's oldest Torah found in Italy
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Published May 31st, 2013 - 06:00 GMT via SyndiGate.info

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The Torah in question. Image courtesy of the University of Bologna
The Torah in question. Image courtesy of the University of Bologna
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London
,
BBC
,
Mauro Perani
,
University of Bologna

The University of Bologna claim to have discovered the oldest complete scroll of Judaism's most important text, the Torah.

A professor of the university said that the scroll was in the university library but had been mislabeled, the BBC reported.

Firstly, the scroll was thought to be not more than a few hundred years old but carbon dating tests confirmed that it dates back to about 850 years.

The university's Professor of Hebrew, Mauro Perani, describing it as an object of extraordinary worth, told the publication that this would make it the oldest complete text of the Torah known to exist.

According to the university, one of its librarians, Leonello Modona in 1889,examined the scroll and dated it to the 17th Century.

However, Prof Perani recently re-examined the scroll, and found that script used was that of the oriental Babylonian tradition which meant that that the scroll must be extremely old.

The university added that that the text has many features forbidden in later copies under rules laid down by the scholar Maimonides in the 12th Century.

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